Profile

University of Kassel - UX, Design, Frontend and TYPO3 for the university and its departments

The Initial Situation

Founded in 1971, the University of Kassel is distinguished above all by its diverse and interdisciplinary research and teaching.

Its profile includes, among other things, environmental, climate and energy research, nanostructure sciences and educational research as well as the fine arts.

On its website, the University of Kassel provides comprehensive information about its courses of study, faculties and institutes as well as about its research, life in Kassel and much more. The website comprises thousands of pages, grouped into sub-websites - e.g. for the departments - each with up to four navigation levels and numerous design and content formats.

However, the fact that the numerous offers are designed for very different target groups was hardly apparent in the previous design. Another problem was the website's lack of responsiveness: In view of the constantly increasing use of the website with mobile devices, there was an urgent need for action.

Our Task

The big challenge of this project was the complexity resulting from the variety of contents and sub-websites and their different focal points.

  • The focus was on the development of a new responsive design based on the Atomic Design approach.

  • For the migration of all content, it had to be ensured that every previous element in the old design found its equivalent in the new one.

  • On a conceptual level it was necessary to better understand the various target groups and their needs. This included prospective students, applicants, students, scientists and employees. In future, users should be able to find the right content for them in the clearest and shortest possible way.

  • Last but not least, the University of Kassel wanted advice and support in revising central content to suit the target groups and search engines. Since there are about 1,500 employees with editorial rights on the subsites, corresponding training courses for potentially large numbers of participants had to be rganized.

Implementation

  • We developed six well-founded personas, representing the most important target groups; this way it was easy to put them into the users' minds right from the start.

  • With the help of our target group matrix, which relates content and personas to each other, the weighting and prioritization of the various contents was considerably simplified in order to achieve the goals set for the website as well as possible.

  • Based on our basic design, we further developed the screen design together with the University of Kassel. The use of fine lines, which are typical for the Uni Kassel CD, as well as coloured areas to emphasise particularly important information were in the focus. Various teaser formats also enable a varied design.

  • We developed the frontend based on the CSS framework Bootstrap 4. We implemented numerous specific adaptations to meet the high demands of the education sector and the accessibility requirements of the website.

Clear navigation menu, target group and topic entries on the start page.
The Newswall extension from cosmoblonde is used on the start page and some overview pages and - according to its editorial settings - always ensures a lively entry situation.
At the level of detail, tidiness and a lightweight menu ensure full focus on the content.

Project details

  • URL: https://www.uni-kassel.de
  • Customer: University of Kassel
  • Branch: Universität
  • Realisation: Launch of the homepage in June 2018, pages of the study programmes to follow successively
  • Technology: Bootstrap 4, HTML5 / CSS, Jenkins
  • Work: UX consulting, conception, design, responsive front-end implementation, setup of a build process
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